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The Braves are going to ask for tax credits for their new ballpark

Dec 20, 2013, 11:03 AM EDT

Image (1) braves%20logo.gif for post 3603

The idea behind tax credits and other tax incentives is to convince businesses to invest in the jurisdiction over which the taxing authority holds sway. When the business is already committed to investing in the area and there is no danger of losing said investment to another jurisdiction, there is little reason to grant that business tax credits and incentives. To do so is pretty gratuitous, actually.

But hey, sports:

Jim Walls at Atlanta Magazine has secured some documentsshowing “negotiators for Cobb County and the Braves considered funding packages that included up to $60 million in state tax credits on top of the $300 million in county funding.”  . . . another incentive, created especially for new tourism destinations, that can be granted only by the governor. If the team were approved for the program, it could earn the Braves a 10-year rebate on all sales taxes it collected at the new stadium – perhaps $20 million.

The Braves are absolutely undoubtedly staying within the state of Georgia. They have committed to it. There is no going back to Wisconsin or Massachusetts. They’re building a stadium in Cobb County. Yet I wouldn’t bet a pair of fetid dingo’s kidneys that Georgia won’t give them the tax credits they want. Because governments — especially when sports are involved — have totally forgotten what the whole point of using the tax system as a means of incentive creation and have committed to straight corporate welfare. It’s pretty gobsmacking.

  1. madhatternalice - Dec 20, 2013 at 11:16 AM

    “The Braves are absolutely undoubtedly are staying within the state of Georgia.”

    Did you skip the coffee this morning, Craig? :)

  2. jc4455 - Dec 20, 2013 at 11:19 AM

    Disgusting. Don’t stop banging this drum Craig.

    • alexo0 - Dec 20, 2013 at 11:29 AM

      Or rather, just bang it slowly.

    • Old Gator - Dec 20, 2013 at 11:32 AM

      Why? You’d rather go to sleep and let the bloodsucking bastards who own sports franchises continue to rip off various and sundry communities while you’re snoring away in blissful cluelessness?

      Rather than just post a bird dropping like that, why not elaborate a little about why you think it’s such a good idea for communities to rape themselves on behalf of a cabal of billionaires? In all honesty I’m not interested in your rationalizations, but I would like to see if you even have any.

      • gibbyfan - Dec 20, 2013 at 2:00 PM

        I totally agree Gator –It woud seem beyond disgusting and judging from what I read about the Dolphin debacle down your way ther’e plenty of $$ for the pols who are in bed with these guys…………….It is truly the dark side of our system and in the end the idea that we can consistently vote greedy pols out of office is an illusion because they are generally all the same–no matter what they say to get elected……

    • brewcrewfan54 - Dec 20, 2013 at 11:53 AM

      Why should he stop? People are getting screwed and nobody seems to care.

      • alexo0 - Dec 20, 2013 at 12:21 PM

        There are people who care, it’s just that none of them have any power.

        “Sorry kids, we don’t have enough food stamps for supper tonight. Craig Kimbrel is about to get really expensive in arbitration and the Braves needed the tax relief to afford to pay him.”

      • skids003 - Dec 20, 2013 at 12:32 PM

        The ones I was just behind in the grocery store will have to cut back from the ribeyes to sirloins. While I work my rear off and eat hot dogs. I have sympathy for people who really need help, but I see too much abuse. I have no sympathy for the abusers, they live better than those of us “lucky” enough to have a job.

      • brewcrewfan54 - Dec 20, 2013 at 1:03 PM

        You do have power because the jagoffs who agreed to thos are elected officials. Their jobs can be taken away. You don’t even have to wait for an election year if you start recall petitions. That’s what happened when Miller Park was built in Milwaukee.

  3. andreweac - Dec 20, 2013 at 11:21 AM

    Welfare for billionaires!!! Forgot about welfare queens driving Cadillacs… Te new welfare kings only travel by Gulfstream V. Anything less is uncivilized…

    • Old Gator - Dec 20, 2013 at 11:33 AM

      D’ya think maybe the owners of the Braves are part of the…47%?

  4. statsdolie - Dec 20, 2013 at 11:25 AM

    The whole public funding for stadiums for billionaires is a disgusting shame and the public turns a blind eye when their “team” wins.

    • brewcrewfan54 - Dec 20, 2013 at 11:50 AM

      I dont think its a blind eye. Winning just helps ya forget about it for a bit.

  5. brewcrewfan54 - Dec 20, 2013 at 11:47 AM

    Well of course they are. Bend over Cobb County.

    • Francisco (FC) - Dec 20, 2013 at 12:30 PM

      They already bent over, They’re trying to get the State of Georgia to bend over with them.

  6. sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Dec 20, 2013 at 11:51 AM

    Meanwhile in Georgia, Congressman Jack Kingston wants to make poor kids sweep the cafeteria floor to cover the cost of their school lunch program. Perhaps the $20MM could be put to better purpose. In fact, let’s charge the sports team double the tax, and better the community around it.

    • brewcrewfan54 - Dec 20, 2013 at 11:56 AM

      He sounds like a real peach. Not only do they have to deal with the stigma of being poor he also wants to give kids, who are mean by the way, more reason to make fun of them.

      • Francisco (FC) - Dec 20, 2013 at 12:31 PM

        A GEORGIA peach!

      • sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Dec 20, 2013 at 12:43 PM

        Not to mention, what work did the rich kids do to “earn” their lunch? If anything, the rich kids are the ones likely to never learn the value of hard work. The lesson will be forced upon the poor kids soon enough.

    • aceshigh11 - Dec 20, 2013 at 12:28 PM


      Kingston is nothing but a retrograde, reactionary, glorified hillbilly dressed in a fancy Gucci suit bought for him by the Koch brothers.

      Meanwhile, billionaires continue to suck resources out of the economy at large and put the screws to working people.

      It doesn’t even matter who’s in power anymore…the rich always win…and EVEN IF Obama were liberal (he’s not), he’d never be able to accomplish anything even remotely progressive without being JFK’d.

      • skids003 - Dec 20, 2013 at 12:34 PM

        Obama is not liberal? I think I have to go to the doctor, I just laughed so hard I pulled a muscle. Hopefully, my health insurance isn’t cancelled.

      • aceshigh11 - Dec 20, 2013 at 12:38 PM

        He implemented the Republicans’ healthcare proposal from the ’90s. The mandate was a Republican idea. The exchanges were a Republican idea.

        Nixon proposed it first. The Heritage Foundation developed it further in the ’80s and ’90s. Gingrich supported it. Dole supported it. Hatch supported it.

        If Obama were liberal, he would have proposed universal single-payer.

        These are things called facts.

        Oh, but I forgot: Barak Hussein Soetoro Osama-Obama is a radical Kenyan usurper who personally forged his birth certificate as a child, and is using Stalinist tactics to herd good, Christian white people into FEMA concentration camps…right?

      • skids003 - Dec 20, 2013 at 1:15 PM

        Oh, I just pulled another one. Just what is he? Is he conservative?

      • chacochicken - Dec 20, 2013 at 2:00 PM

        Surprisingly, there is quite a broad spectrum between the American labels of “liberal” and “conservative”. Barack Obama is slightly to the left of Richard Nixon. The classic conservative, Barry Goldwater supported gay and women’s rights and abortion. I doubt he could be a member of the modern Republican party. Its all very strange.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Dec 20, 2013 at 3:05 PM

        Goldwater would never have made it in the current Republican party:

  7. karlkolchak - Dec 20, 2013 at 11:53 AM

    From what I’ve seen driving in georgia, there must be lots of taxcredits available to open up strip clubs.

  8. sdelmonte - Dec 20, 2013 at 12:16 PM

    And yet this isn’t the worst thing I have read this month about pro sports taking advantage of the government. There was a great expose by the Outside the Lines people of how the PGA Tour, by helping to run charity events at all its tourneys, is granted non-profit status and avoids federal taxes. And how many of the charities involved do such a lousy job actually raising money for the cause that the Better Business Bureau gives them negative ratings.

    Never mind that the NFL, possibly the single most successful profit machine on Earth outside of Apple, also has non-profit tax-exempt status.

    Over and over, the sports leagues find new ways to bilk us. Tax credits for no good reason are just the tip of the dirty iceberg.

  9. MyTeamsAllStink - Dec 20, 2013 at 12:19 PM

    and this is another reason why Las Vegas doesn’t have a pro franchise.that and the gambling aspect

  10. raysfan1 - Dec 20, 2013 at 1:17 PM

    So the team getting the stadium that is supposedly not publicly funded and thus no referendum is required to build it, but is in fact being publicly funded…is also looking to be indirectly publicly funded via paying fewer taxes. Oi.

  11. raysfan1 - Dec 20, 2013 at 1:23 PM

    Assuming this passes, Craig, from now on call it $380 million in public funds, not $300 million, with slink back to this article for the inevitable attempts to refute the assertion.

  12. sfm073 - Dec 20, 2013 at 1:54 PM

    Obama is socially liberal and economically middle-right. I know people take advantage of food stamps because I see everyday at my job, but the amount of money received in food stamps averages out to be under $3 dollars a meal, so it’s usually cheap junk food that people buy with food stamps.

    • skids003 - Dec 20, 2013 at 3:12 PM

      Not where I’m from. You can’t go into a grocery store without having someone try to sell you their excess for half their worth for cash. That tells me they get way more than they need. That’s not $3 bucks a meal. Again, I have sympathy for those that need it, but to see this and then they go get into an Escalade or Yukon, something is wrong with the system.

      • kinggw - Dec 20, 2013 at 3:44 PM

        With all due respect I think your full of it. You are regurgitating the same story that every conservative claims to have witnessed. There are several iterations of the tale your telling on the internet and they all follow the same script. Miraculously all of the conservatives are positioned behind people using food stamps who are buying lobster, steak, and shrimp and the people using food stamps almost always go outside into an expensive car.

        A few questions, first of all why is your business what someone purchases with their food stamp allotment? Secondly, why would you follow someone out to see what kind of car they are driving?

      • skids003 - Dec 20, 2013 at 4:34 PM

        Actually I worked in a grocery store up until a couple years ago, so I think I’m highly qualified to make this statement, and have witnessed it multiple times

        To answer your questions: they approach you in the aisles trying to sell them. The other is after you purchase your items, you see them in the parking lot. Not hard.

    • halfthemoney - Dec 20, 2013 at 8:09 PM

      I’m sorry but I have trouble believing $3 a meal. Is that per person or per meal for a family? The average stamp recipient gets $168 per month; my family averages $146 per month per person. We eat well, very few processed foods.

  13. tonythered - Dec 20, 2013 at 1:55 PM

    Let me get this straight… Cobb/Georgia can skip the taxes from Braves for 10 years while taking taxes from ancillary business that will grow around the development, or they can follow “OccupyWallStreet” advice, keep their undeveloped property and get nothing.

  14. meatcarroll - Dec 20, 2013 at 2:03 PM

    Thank you for continuing to point these obscenities out, Craig.

  15. bravess23 - Dec 21, 2013 at 10:46 AM

    Everybody in Georgia and around the Braves and the Braves franchise Loves! this move… and everyone not in Georgia, not around the Braves franchise is complaining. noticed this since the day of announcement

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